Welcome to Lettuce Veg Out!
I’m Nicole Stevens, a vegan Registered Dietitian.
If you’re like me, you love to try new recipes and get creative in the kitchen. You want to eat vegan meals that taste amazing without counting calories or macros but are still nutritionally balanced.
Most of all, you want recipes that make it fun to be vegan while enabling an ethical, energetic lifestyle.
That’s why I empower vegans to eat a restriction-free, sustainable diet while building confidence in the kitchen.
I started Lettuce Veg Out as a vegan food blog in 2016 and expanded it later on to write about vegan nutrition too! Food and nutrition go hand-in-hand, so being able to confidently create new recipes that are as tasty as they are balanced was important to me.
Becoming a Registered Dietitian (RD) enabled me to speak about vegan nutrition through evidence-based research. All my work in vegan nutrition is fully based in science and is meant to help reduce misinformation about vegan diets.
Join me in this journey towards a sustainable vegan diet without restriction! Lettuce veg out together. 🙂
How do You Become a Registered Dietitian?
To become a Registered Dietitian, there are a few standard steps:
1. Complete an undergraduate degree at an accredited university.
I completed my undergraduate degree (Bachelors of Applied Science, Applied Human Nutrition) at the University of Guelph in Ontario, Canada.
2. Complete a supervised post-degree diploma or Masters/ practicum program.
I completed a Masters/practicum program (Masters of Science in Foods and Nutrition) at Western University in Ontario, Canada. My full year of placements under the supervision of specialized dietitians focused on:
- Diabetes care
- Outpatient counselling
- Community nutrition
- Inpatient nutrition care
3. Pass a national registration exam (the CDRE).
I passed this exam and became registered to practice as a dietitian in the Province of Ontario.
Why a Registered Dietitian? Can’t Anybody Talk About Vegan Food and Nutrition?
For most of my life I didn’t know what a Registered Dietitian was. Many people don’t. Especially with similar sounding titles like “nutritionist” that people hear or see online, it can be confusing to know what these mean (especially because they can mean different things depending where you live).
The truth is that for many places around the world, anybody can call themselves a nutritionist or similar title without the formal education. Regulation is important when receiving information that’s pertinent to your health and wellbeing.
That’s why I knew it was important to go through all the schooling and continuing education needed to be a Registered Dietitian (RD). Especially when talking about veganism, I want to ensure that everything I say is backed in the best scientific studies available.
Why do I Call Myself a Vegan Registered Dietitian?
At first I was hesitant to call myself as a vegan Registered Dietitian. However, I’m vegan and fully embrace this label to help vegans find me. Given the incomplete and often misleading nutrition information online about vegan diets, I realized there was a huge need for a science-backed and trustworthy voice.
While dietary changes are a large part of being vegan, veganism is not a diet (it’s about animals). The term vegan is often misused to refer to a diet, but I believe it’s about the ethical commitment.
Often when vegans take an ethical approach that focuses on animal liberation, it can be difficult to transform their diets. It’s hard to break routines and learn how to enjoy your old favorites without using animal-derived products. That’s why I’m here! I want to help inspire you with great recipes while also educating you in how to make balanced, sustainable meals.
Frequently Asked Questions About Me
- What do you eat? I eat all the recipes that I post to Lettuce Veg Out. Think of it as a cookbook from my personal vegan kitchen! I thoroughly test every recipe and cycle back to remake most of them again.
- How long have you been cooking? Since I could stand! As a kid I loved being in the kitchen and it hasn’t changed.
- How long have you been vegan? I started transitioning to a plant-based diet in 2010. By 2011 I was vegetarian and in early 2016 I went vegan.
- Do you have any formal training in cooking/ culinary nutrition? No, I don’t have any formal training in culinary nutrition or recipe development; but I have years of experience cooking for myself and developing vegan recipes!
- How did you find a partner/ husband who is vegan? He wasn’t vegan when we met, not even close. I didn’t “force” him to be vegan; in fact I rarely touched on the subject. My approach was to cook him awesome food and let him decide for himself how he wanted to eat. Once he understood the ethical side, he had no problem becoming vegan (my seitan recipe helped too).
- Did you have a vegan wedding? Yes, my husband was vegan by the time we got married and we had a fully vegan wedding. It was at our house and catered by a fantastic vegan restaurant (with part of the proceeds going to an animal sanctuary)!
Thanks for learning about my journey. If you want to receive updates about vegan recipes and nutrition articles, sign up for the Veg Out newsletter!